Dodgers starter Max Scherzer hasn’t been at his best in his last few starts. According to manager Dave Roberts, Dodger pitching coaches have identified a few mechanical adjustments that Scherzer needs to make to get back to his old self. The team is expecting to see a much more effective Scherzer in Monday’s pivotal Game 3 against San Francisco.
That being said, Scherzer only allowed one earned run in Wednesday’s wild card game against the St. Louis Cardinals. That one run came on a wild pitch. He didn’t have his best stuff but still kept the Dodgers in the game through a tenuous 4.1 IP.
For most playoff starters, one run on three hits would be a success. But by Scherzer’s standards, it was a shaky start.
In his first nine starts for the Dodgers, Scherzer logged a 0.78 ERA. In his last three starts, however, his ERA stands at 6.75.
Mechanical issues could explain why Scherzer lacked control against St. Louis in the wild card game. The three walks he issued last Wednesday were the most in a start since July 29th versus Philadelphia.
Time and time again, Scherzer buried pitches in the dirt against right-handed hitters in the wild card game. He was also unable to execute his breaking pitches to generate whiffs.
Scherzer should outperform his last three starts if the small mechanical deficiencies have been addressed.
He can keep the Giants off balance if he has the slider and curveball working. If not, firing fastballs will not bode well for the righty against one of the best hitting teams in baseball.
He has shown throughout the year that he can still pitch at a high level. Even when his mechanics were a mess, he held a white hot Cardinals offense to just one run.
A couple adjustments should lead to much better results for Scherzer in a pivotal NLDS Game 3.